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July 1986

On-line Computer Systems

Author Affiliations

Departments of Pediatrics and Obstetrics and Gynecology The University of Tennessee, Memphis 853 Jefferson Ave Memphis, TN 38163

Am J Dis Child. 1986;140(7):618-619. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1986.02140210016008

Sir.—In your editorial "On-line Computer Availability for AJDC,"1 you expressed your view that the microcomputer is here to stay. I feel that the pediatric literature is long overdue in introducing the potential of these systems, and I support your efforts in this regard.

Your editorial, unfortunately, was not an introduction as much as it was an advertisement for the system that provides AJDC on line. You should note that this system ranks as one of the most expensive for bibliographic retrievals. Regular users of such services know that third-party vendors of databases invariably inflate the cost to the users.

This subject is best dealt with by an experienced, unbiased user, such as in the recent report by Haynes et al,2 in which an objective evaluation of Medline vendors showed the wide range of user costs.

Advertisements disguised as editorials should be replaced by this type of knowledgeable

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